Wednesday, May 15, 2013 Health and Human Services Releases New CLAS Standards Health and Human Services (HHS) released National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS) in Health Care, which includes 15 standards developed by its Office of Minority Health to expand health equity, improve quality, and address health care disparities in diverse and minority communities. The standards help organizations tailor culturally and linguistically appropriate health care services to an individual's culture and language preferences to improve health care outcomes. HHS federal and nonfederal partners provided input to create the new standards, which are an enhanced version of the 2000 National Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services Standards. Deputy Assistant Secretary for Minority Health and Director of the HHS Office of Minority Health J. Nadine Gracia, MD, MSCE, said, "As our nation becomes increasingly diverse, improving cultural and linguistic competency across public health and our health care system can be one of our most powerful levers for advancing health equity." You can view a map of states that have proposed or passed CLAS legislation here.